Dewsbury Rams have achieved their highest average attendance since the turn of the century.
The Rams have recorded an average crowd of 1,429 for 2015’s regular schedule of Kingstone Press Championship fixtures.
It’s the best average seen at The Tetley’s Stadium since 2000, when Neil Kelly’s all-conquering side won the Trans-Pennine Cup, NFP League Leaders Trophy and NFP Grand Final, while also being the highest figure recorded during Mark Sawyer’s tenure as chairman of the club.
The figure also represents an increase of 37% on last year’s average of 1,044 and marks a second consecutive season of attendance growth at The Tetley’s Stadium – a rise of more than 60% on the figure recorded in 2013.
The Rams’ average for 2015 was boosted significantly by the visit of Bradford Bulls on Easter Monday, which attracted a stadium record attendance of 4,068, but there are increases across the board.
Home matches against Whitehaven, Workington Town, Halifax and Doncaster have enjoyed improvements on equivalent 2014 figures, while promotional work in the lead-up to the season-opening home match against Sheffield Eagles attracted an increase of more than 50%.
More than 1,500 people attended the Rams’ nail-biting clash with table-toppers Leigh Centurions, which is 30% up on last year’s figure, while the attendance of 1,103 posted for the game against Hunslet Hawks represents a rise of almost 50% on the Hawks’ last visit in 2013.
Meanwhile, in its first season, the Rams’ Reserve Championship side is attracting an average attendance of more than 200.
The news comes less than two weeks shy of the upcoming Championship Shield Super 8s campaign, which offers four more home matches to Dewsbury Rams season ticket holders.
Rams chairman Sawyer said: “The club, its sponsors and a dedicated team of volunteers have made a huge investment in the club and the stadium during the last two years and it is pleasing to see that hard work paying off.
“We have transformed the stadium and the match day experience for supporters through the construction of new terracing, the creation of new refreshment facilities and refurbishment of old ones, and general maintenance and renovation throughout the ground.
“The figures posted for matches against Bradford, Sheffield and Leigh demonstrate the club’s ability to attract big crowds for big matches, but the like-for-like increases almost across the board are also extremely encouraging.
“And even if the crowd for the game against the Bulls is discounted, the average is still our highest in six years.
“With the ‘regular season’ now under our belts, we look ahead to the Super 8s and our charge for the Championship Shield.”
The fixtures for the Rams’ Super 8s campaign will be revealed on Wednesday morning.